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Suggest treatment for hip pain and difficulty in walking

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Posted on Tue, 22 Jul 2014
Question: My wife (65 years-old) has spent most of her time in bed the last few years. She feels tired all the time. She is now walking for 5-10 minutes in the morning. She has noticed that her hips are somewhat painful after her walk. Should she continue her walks in the morning? Will her hip pain tend to diminish as she continues her walking regimen? Do you have any suggestions on how she might proceed with her walking program?
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Answered by Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda (2 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Passive exercise and muscle strengthening

Detailed Answer:
Hi,
I am Dr. Prakash HM and I would like to answer your query.
In the elderly, age related changes can lead the person to feel weak, more due to reduced nutrition.
As she has spent most of the time in bed, last few years and also recently had a cardiovascular pacemaker - she would have been hesitant for movements.

She needs to walk a few minutes a day to improve her quality of life.

I need to ask you two questions:
1. Did she have an fall in the last few years?
2. Is she overweight?

The pain is probably due to osteoarthritis. Was any X-ray done of the hip to rule out joint diseases? If you can answer these, I can help you better.

At present I can suggest the following
1. She can continue with the walking regimen by starting off with passive physical exercises, stretching and muscle strengthening.
2. She should use a walking stick
3. She might require physiotherapy

I can add more details, if you give me more information regarding the above questions and any chronic diseases.
Happy to help you again. Do get back with answer to queries and I will try to help you more.
Dr. Prakash HM

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Raju A.T
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Follow up: Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda (12 hours later)
My wife is overweight (230 lbs.5'3"). She has never fallen.
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Answered by Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda (1 hour later)
Brief Answer:
Set action goals - use four legged cane

Detailed Answer:
Hi,
Her Body mass index is high enough to be called as obese.
Overweight and obese have increased incidence of osteoarthritis.

I can recommend the following things for her:
1. Passive exercises in sitting or supine position to strengthen the lower limb muscles
2. Then active exercises with resistance to strengthen muscle (still in supine or sitting position).
3. Later weight bearing exercise while walking with the help of cane.
4. Cane should be four legged to protect her when she bears her weight on it.
5. Pain is going to be present, and with more pressure on cane, could become less overtime.
6. Not only lower limb, upper limb stretching and back strengthening is also essential. Take help of physiotherapist for it.
7. Set action goals focuses on specific activities like starting a healthy food or activity dairy.
8. Remember even small amount of activity provides immediate benefits.
9. Care taker should always be around to support her to help her and also to prevent any fall. (Fall could become very serious)
10. Any dizziness, weakness should be considered seriously.

Weight reduction is essential, but difficult. Avoid fat and carbohydrate rich food. Ask her to embrace healthy eating.

If pain is severe, she can take NSAID group of painkillers for it.
Hope it helps.
If you have any further queries, do ask. If you do not require any clarifications, close the discussion and rate the answer. Thank you.
Dr. Prakash HM
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vinay Bhardwaj
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Follow up: Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda (1 hour later)
Thank you so much for your responses! Your expertise and kindness are indeed greatly appreciated. You have really helped motivate my wife. We may have a few other related queries in the near future.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda (6 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Happy to help you in future queries

Detailed Answer:
Hi,
Thanks for such expressive words and hopefully everything improves. I will be always available to help you in related queries in near future. Take care.
Dr. Prakash HM

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vinay Bhardwaj
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Answered by
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Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda

Geriatrics Specialist

Practicing since :2004

Answered : 2138 Questions

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Suggest treatment for hip pain and difficulty in walking

Brief Answer: Passive exercise and muscle strengthening Detailed Answer: Hi, I am Dr. Prakash HM and I would like to answer your query. In the elderly, age related changes can lead the person to feel weak, more due to reduced nutrition. As she has spent most of the time in bed, last few years and also recently had a cardiovascular pacemaker - she would have been hesitant for movements. She needs to walk a few minutes a day to improve her quality of life. I need to ask you two questions: 1. Did she have an fall in the last few years? 2. Is she overweight? The pain is probably due to osteoarthritis. Was any X-ray done of the hip to rule out joint diseases? If you can answer these, I can help you better. At present I can suggest the following 1. She can continue with the walking regimen by starting off with passive physical exercises, stretching and muscle strengthening. 2. She should use a walking stick 3. She might require physiotherapy I can add more details, if you give me more information regarding the above questions and any chronic diseases. Happy to help you again. Do get back with answer to queries and I will try to help you more. Dr. Prakash HM